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April 27, 2010

i-Cable strikes free-to-air World Cup deal

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by Rapid TV News

Website: Rapid TV News

Hong Kong cable operator i-Cable has agreed to let free-to-air networks ATV and TVB broadcast a selection of matches from the forthcoming soccer World Cup – but only if they broadcast the entire coverage, adverts and all.

ATV and TVB’s digital-terrestrial channels will screen the opening match, both semi-finals and the final, as well as highlights and six magazine shows.

Each match will include all the ads i-Cable is running, as well as related programming.

i-Cable has exclusive rights to the World Cup, which kicks off on June 11.

Hong Kong’s government had been exerting pressure on all parties to come to an arrangement so at least some of the key matches could be seen free-to-air.

But only around half of Hong Kong’s homes will be able to view the matches on the free-to-air broadcasters as penetration of DTT stands at about 50%, or 1.2 million.

i-Cable has some 1 million subscribers.

Story link: i-Cable strikes free-to-air World Cup deal

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